Updated Cubs 2014 Minor League Camp Rosters (3/20)
The Cubs have added a couple of 25-year old "suspects" to Minor League Camp, acquiring 1B Matt Scioscia from the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for 1B-OF Trevor Gretzky, and signing RHP Reinier Roibal (ex-SF).
The 6'3 230 Roibal was a high-profile Cuban defector signed by the Giants in 2010, but he was unable to work his way out of Lo-A ball after three seasons in the Giants organization, and was released at the end of Minor League Camp this time a year ago. He then spent the 2013 season pitching for the Newark Bears in the independent Atlantic League.
The son of Angels manager Mike Scioscia, the right-handed hitting Matt Scioscia was selected by the Angels in the 45th round of the 2011 draft as a college senior out of the University of Notre Dame, where he had been a catcher, first-baseman, and DH. The Angels moved him to 1B full-time in 2013, but like Roibal, the younger Scioscia has been unable to progress, hitting a combined 194/248/224 in 46 games (146 PA) between AZL Angels, Burlington, and Inland Empire in 2013.
I strongly suspect the Cubs will immediately move Scioscia back to catcher, the one position in the Cubs system that lacks quality depth, perhaps hoping that his catching "bloodlines" might awaken. The Cubs are also probably hoping a change of scenery might help the younger Scioscia fulfill his promise, but at age 25 he won't have a lot of time to show what he can do.
21-year old Trevor Gretzky is (of course) the son of hockey legend Wayne Gretzky, and was the Cubs 7th round pick in the 2011 June draft. But through no fault of his own, he was seemingly buried in a Cubs system that is chock full of outfielders with promise. The younger Gretzky never fully recovered from right shoulder surgery (he suffered a torn labrum while playing QB in a football game his senior year in HS) and so he been has been relegated to playing only DH, LF, or 1B in pro ball. (He has what is sometimes called a "rag arm"). However, he doesn't have the HR power you would want out of DH, 1B, or LF, he has just average speed so he doesn't profile as a CF, and he is a below average defender at both 1B and LF. What the younger Gretzky does have is decent eye/hand coordination, a good eye for the strike zone, and a nice opposite-field line-drive stroke at the plate (albeit without any HR power).
2014 CUBS MINOR LEAGUE CAMP ROSTERS (last updated 3-20-2014):
NOTE: ROSTERS AT MINOR LEAGUE CAMP ARE FLUID. Minor League players are often initially assigned to a squad one or even two levels above where they will ultimately be assigned once the regular season starts. Minor League Camp roster assignments are based on several factors, including the player's position as it relates to the specific needs of the organization, and the player's age, amount of professional experience, and previous season's performance (including any time spent at a post-season Instructional League). As players are sent to Minor League Camp from the Major League squad during the course of Spring Training, there are corresponding roster moves made at Minor League Camp as players are either moved down a level or released.
* bats or throws left
# bats both
* Tommy Hottovy
* Eric Jokisch
Barret Loux (limited activity only - shoulder)
Trey McNutt (limited activity only - shoulder)
* Zac Rosscup
Yaniel Cabezas (INACTIVE - may have been released)
* Charlie Cutler
* Rafael Lopez
# Arismendy Alcantara
* Lars Anderson
Greg Rohan (INACTIVE - may have been released)
* Logan Watkins
Jae-Hoon Ha (limited activity only)
* Brett Jackson
* Mitch Meier (limited activity only)
* Rubi Silva
Josh Vitters (ex-3B)
* Hunter Cervenka
* Frank del Valle
C. J. Edwards
P. J. Francescon
Pierce Johnson (limited activity only - hamstring)
* Austin Kirk
* Jeff Lorick
Carlos Escobar (INACTIVE - may have been released)
* Wes Darvill
* Walter Ibarra
Tim Saunders (limited activity only - elbow surgery rehab)
Brad Zapenas (INACTIVE - may have been released)
* Pin-Chieh Chen
# Zeke DeVoss
* Bijan Rademacher
# Oliver Zapata
Josh Conway (limited activity only - elbow surgery rehab)
* Nathan Dorris
* Michael Heesch
* Andrew McKirahan
Ryan McNeil (limited activity only - 2013 TJS rehab)
* Al Yevoli
* Rob Zastryzny
Ben Carhart (ex-3B)
Nate Maldonado (player-coach)
* Justin Marra
* Zak Blair
# Jeimer Candelario
* Marco Hernandez
* Dan Vogelbach
* Jose Dore (INACTIVE - may have been released)
* Shawon Dunston Jr
* Jacob Hannemann
* Rock Shoulders (ex-1B)
KANE COUNTY (54):
Marcelo Carreno (limited activity only - shoulder surgery rehab)
Jesus Castillo (limited activity only)
* Gerardo Concepcion
* Tyler Ihrig
Juan Carlos Paniagua
* Anthony Prieto
Brad Renner (limited activity only)
* Sam Wilson
# Mark Malave
* Alberto Mineo
Rony Rodriguez (ex-OF)
Neftali Rosario (INACTIVE - may have been released)
* Danny Canela (ex-C)
Kelvin Freeman (INACTIVE - may have been released)
* Jordan Hankins
* Danny Lockhart
* Jacob Rogers
# Alex Sanchez
# Trevor Stevens (limited activity only - right hand injury)
* Kevin Brown
* Rashad Crawford
STILL NOT PRESENT ON FIELD: (going back to beginning of Minor League Camp)
* Jeffry Antigua, P
# Kevin Encarnacion, OF (INACTIVE - rehabbing from injuries sustained in off-season car crash)
Mike Hamann, P
Loiger Padron, P
* Brian Smith, P
Elliot Soto, INF (RESTRICTED LIST - 50-game Drug of Abuse suspension)
Apparently the Yankees had the choice of either Gleyber Torres or Eloy Jimenez in the Chapman deal, and they chose Torres.
Chapman shouldn't be reserved anymore on 40 man.
Interesting split on Heyward according to ESPN. As a CF, his slash line .292/.363/.375/.738. At RF: .212/.204/.300/.604. 21/72 as a CF, 58/273 as a RF.
He's also been better when batting 2nd, but he had a nice start in the 6 hole, but has slumped ever since. He was heating up before the All Star break, but is only hitting .108 in the 2nd half.
When we played the Reds with Chapman, I always thought of it as an eight-inning game. So now other teams have eight innings to try to get a lead against the Cubs. Should be a challenge, assuming three or four Cubs ever start hitting again.
I don't really try to get to know and like these players personally. I'm rooting for laundry, for the most part. Exceptions might be when a player makes trouble in the clubhouse or in the dugout. (Zambrano and Bradley come to mind. Also Papelbon.) But I don't think Chapman is one of those jerks.
Unfortunately, a pretty good summary. It looks like next year Heyward will be getting yet another batting stance adjustment.
The recent good news has been Baez. I'm afraid about the next league adjustment on him, though, which is probably right around the corner.
Bryant I don't worry about too much. Just not seeing the ball well right now. He'll turn it around. Russell's been good with men in scoring position all year and he's 22ish. He'll be fine but next year is likely to be his breakout year.
If Travis' back-to-back-to-back walks cost Hendricks the ERA title, that would really suck.
Edit: "A lifeless loss to a lousy Sox team."
This place is a real downer after a loss to the Sox.
I expect they will go 5-9 games above .500 the rest of the year. 96-98 wins will win the Division.
They should have one more 2-3 week hot streak in them.
However, several players are just "average" for the last month: Zobrist, Ross, Russell, Ceasar. Montero is terrible, plus he cannot throw anyone out. -WAR. Heyward is abysmal at the plate, but a plus in the OF. Still with RISP he has been terrible. KB has not been driving in runs as of late. But Apparently the team is still above average with RISP according to S Sahadev.
I came to that realization tonight. I kept expecting them to play better, but now I realize they aren't going to. They are a .500 team now.
- They have one reliable starting pitcher. Jake's magic is gone, and it doesn't look like it's coming back. Lester has been lousy recently. Lackey's ERA goes up every time he pitches.
- Heyward has been dead weight all year. I can't remember a single series where he was a significant offensive contributor. Not one. Great defense, but but if he were hitting .270 with 10 HR and played average defense, the Cubs would be better off.
new rule...no one's allowed to throw k.bryant a changeup
Team is .500 since early May and is playing like a .500 team. Lack of offense seems to be putting a lot of pressure on the pitchers...and they aren't handling it terribly well.
.500 the rest of the way still may win the division though.
...i hate espn.
nothing like settling into a cubs game to get a few minutes cutaway for an ortiz AB in the 6th inning of the det/bos game.
oh, at least they're doing split screen now...i guess.
I'm liking this rookie Nathan.
Richard DFA'd. Meh...
Throwbacks with fashionable cutouts would be a nice touch.